Wednesday, August 24, 2011

saying goodbye to cable television

when we moved to a different state about a year ago my husband had this *crazy* idea that we should give up our cable television. i thought that he had lost his mind! i don't watch a ton of tv, but i do love my "friends" on grey's anatomy, desperate housewives and modern family....with a few reality shows thrown in for good measure (don't judge). i loved the idea of saving $100 or more a month, but really? no cable?! was he losing his mind?!

the reality is that we did it. we broke up with our cable company and now have entered into a committed relationship with hulu plus, netflix and roku. with the addition of these three into our lives we are now only paying around $14 a month and i still get to hang out with my "friends".

here's how we did it:

• roku. the only thing that you have to buy outright is this snazzy roku player. it connects to your tv (sort of like a dvr) and enables you to link to hulu, netflix and amazon (more about this later). It is only $99.99 and there is no monthly fee. however, i believe that if you have certain dvd players they will do the same thing.....but i am not techie enough to know for sure.

Roku 2100X XDS Streaming Player 1080p

•hulu plus. for $7.99 a month you can watch programs from your tv (via roku) or through any computer. because you are a member there are only limited commercials (although i think there shouldn't be any) and you can "subscribe" to your favorite shows just like you do with your dvr......the downside is that they are not available until the day after they are if you are one of those people that have to watch something live, this is not for you. also, they don't have everything. there are some shows and networks that are not available and some that can only be watched via the web. annoying....but when i am only paying $7.99 vs. $150+ i can't complain too much. anything that i am truly desperate to watch that they don't have i simply watch online. easy-peasy.

this link should give you 2 weeks free. 

•netflix is the final piece of our puzzle. i am a little mad at them for changing their pricing plans recently, but for $9.99 a month you can still watch all of the movies that you watch instantly. they are adding new content daily and we have so much fun recently watching all of the old seasons of ally mcbeal and mad men (they also have fantastic content for the kiddos). they offer a one month trial for free. 

the bottom line is that getting rid of cable isn't easy and this plan certainly does not have all of the bells and whistles that cable (and your dvr) can offer you.....but if you are like most of us right now and are trying to cut back on your monthly spending this may be something to at least try. paying under $20 a month has made a *huge* difference in our monthly budget that is for sure.

anyone else made the switch?


  1. Earlier this year we gave up our cable. We've just been using Netflix streaming via our Wii in the living room(and my laptop for me to watch my guilty pleasure of Teen Mom on, but we have plans to get an Apple TV soon for the master bedroom.

    For us, the switch only took about $30 off of our bill because we had our cable & internet bundled. When we canceled cable, the internet bill jumped up to like $60 a month. My husband has been saying he's going to shop around to find a better rate, but he hasn't yet. Hopefully soon! =)

  2. We canceled our cable about a year ago and the transition has been surprisingly easy, thanks to all the thing you mentioned. We don't have roku, but out computer has a big screen and is in the living room with the couch. We also just use the free version of hulu, which works just fine for us. The one thing I really, really, really miss is Food Network. There's only a few shows with a few episodes available on hulu, so thats sad. But like you sad, when it's free you can't complain!

    And the bonus is that Netflix has all the old cartoons from when I was little, so my kids are watching Inspector Gadget, Tom and Jerry, and He-Man all the time! So funny!

  3. Well, we didn't get rid of cable itself but we did give a big middle finger to our local cable company. We went with DirectTV because it was less expensive and we simply hated our cable company. Your idea is great though..... if Direct TV ends up sucking we will have to give it a shot!

  4. We got rid of cable and switched to Netflix. It was a great decision for us.
    Also, to Erin - I miss Food Network too but I have found a couple clips or episodes on their website. Nothing to make you giddy but still to get some tiny FN fix.